The preconceptions about this film (equalling little more than a pile of cinematic manure) could cloud collective judgements in the strong opening 15 minutes. However the skepticism is, disappointingly, proven correct in the ensuing dull 100 minutes.
Dornan and Johnson perform well, but the remainder is overwhelmingly mediocre and poor. The script, cinematography and direction, capped by a dreadful – to the point of distraction – Top 40 soundtrack, all combine to neuter all sex appeal or edge.
Fans of the novel may enjoy but for a story about BDSM, the end product is distinctly unsexy and mostly boring.
Dornan and Johnson do the best with what they’re given, but there’s an overwhelming whiff of vanilla here. You’ve seen worse; you’ve imagined better.
CAST: Dakota Johnson, Jamie Dornan, Jennifer Ehle
DIRECTOR: Sam Taylor-Johnson
WRITERS: Kelly Marcel (screenplay), E.L. James (novel)
SYNOPSIS: Literature student Anastasia Steele’s life changes forever when she meets the handsome, yet tormented, billionaire Christian Grey.